Friday, November 1, 2013

Books are not dead.

As I filed one classic book after another yesterday, it occurred to me that all the talk of books dying is premature.

Every book I filed was solid -- a great or good book -- and each and every one of them had sold at least once before and will sell again. 

Good solid books.  These were just the replacements.  I could find hundreds if not thousands more of good solid books if I had the time, money and space.  There is no lack of potential.

There are stories out there about how ebooks have flattened and even declined.  I predicted this -- as soon as the newness wore off, people would come back to books.  My guess is that ebooks will be an adjunct to physical books, that they won't completely replace them.

What I've found after the last couple of years is that the tactile appeal of books extends to hardcovers.  Obviously, it isn't just about price or convenience if people will buy expensive hardcovers rather than a cheap paperback and/or ebook.

There are other stories about how Apple has decided, arbitrarily, that some books are not suitable for them.  And stories of publishers assuming that a book isn't suitable and censoring themselves.

I don't think we want Apple or anyone else telling us what we want to read.

So all in all, I think all the hype about ebooks was overblown.  Books are here to stay.

All I know is -- the more effort, time, space and money I put into bringing books into the store, the more books I sell.

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